Party under pressure on climate crisis as Corbyn says Johnson can not be trusted

The Conservative party’s record on tackling the climate crisis has been condemned by leading scientists and former government advisers, as the Labour leader, Jeremy Corbyn, warned that the forthcoming election was the last chance to halt the escalating emergency.

Experts accused the Conservatives of copying rightwing politicians in the US by deliberately weakening environmental protections. Meanwhile, analysis by Labour reveals that environmental policies put forward since 2017 and opposed by the Tories would have led to emissions reductions of over 70m tonnes a year by 2030 – more than the annual emissions of Portugal.

The climate emergency has become a key battleground in the election, with Labour promising a transformative green industrial revolution, the Liberal Democrats pledging to spend billions on the crisis, and the Conservatives announcing a pre-election moratorium on fracking and pledging to plant 30m trees a year by 2025.

On Sunday, Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn said the Conservatives could not be trusted on the environment.

“This general election is our last chance to radically change course, or face the threat of a hostile and dying planet,” he said. “The science is clear – we don’t have time to waste.”

He said Labour’s green industrial revolution would create hundreds of thousands of “good, clean jobs that will transform towns, cities and communities that have been held back and neglected for decades”.

The Conservatives have come under increasing pressure on the climate crisis during the election campaign and recent analysis shows they are on course to miss several key environmental targets. Boris Johnson is the only party leader to have refused to take part in a TV climate debate, and he drew anger in Yorkshire last week when confronted by people whose livelihoods had been devastated by the floods. In Somerset, Johnson dodged environmental protesters, whom he later dismissed as “crusties”.

Read more: The Guardian